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by Vault Careers | September 01, 2020


Jules Gravinese is a self-employed web developer. She's the owner of Web Veteran, a web design and consulting business. Gravinese spoke to Vault about what a day in her life looks like.

8 AM to 9 AM: I wake up. (This probably sounds lazy. But bear with me, reserving judgment until you hear about the whole day.) I check email for any emergencies and act accordingly. With all clear, I help with miscellaneous chores and have breakfast with my family. Then I shower.

9:30 AM: Round 1 of work begins. I’m at my desk, which is just down the hall, answering emails instead of doing [technical] “work.” It’s frustrating trying to concentrate, getting good steam going, just to be called off and switch projects. There’s lots of wasted built-up energy. It’s a mixed blessing because I service nearly 50 domains so there is quite a bit of support going on. I never leave anyone out of touch when they need assistance or have an issue. Typical issues for clients include creating email accounts, publishing time sensitive content, technology usage/training—things of that nature.

10 AM: I participate in a conference call with clients. Usually these calls are regarding the previous week’s progress, current tasks, and future plans. For larger clients that subcontract me, the call is focused on their clients’ projects and tasks that I am responsible for.

11 AM: The conference call is done. I answer more emails. If some emails have fast tasks, I carry those out. Otherwise I schedule work, update my project management program accordingly, and let the client know an estimated completion time, if possible.

12:30 AM: Lunch time. Normally I eat at my desk. But a few times a week I eat with everyone in the dining room. Occasionally, we go out for lunch.

1 AM: Round 2 of work begins. Now I’m doing more intensive tasks. These include work that goes beyond answering questions or making small maintenance tweaks, such as programming changes on existing Web apps. Normally these are completed within 30 minutes each. I still get interrupted (phone calls and “the sky is falling” emails from clients), so I don’t get into heavy-duty tasks/projects.

4 AM: I break for time with my family and dinner.

8 AM to 11 AM: Round 3 of work begins. Kiddies are well asleep. I look at my harder tasks and larger projects to get a game plan going for the evening. These projects span many months and require a high level of concentration. With everyone else asleep I dive in.

11 AM to 2 AM: I’m getting tired, but I keep going. Instead, I look at the week ahead and get ready for bed. I usually get about six hours of sleep a night if I’m lucky!

This post was excerpted from the new Vault Career Guide to Social Media.